Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) has thrown in the towel in the portable device market, as it drops its price on Windows RT.
The company has continued to struggle with the legacy Windows products for PCs, and it will put out an 8.1 versions to help address some customer objections to its new interface. The portable problem is much more vexing. It is critical that Microsoft take market share from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Google Inc.'s (NASDAQ: GOOG) Android, which continue to grow. Android in particular has taken the lead and its app stores, critical to customer loyalty, and may soon pass Apple's in terms of downloads.
According to Bloomberg:
Microsoft Corp. is cutting the price of its Windows software for small tablets, seeking to shore up foundering efforts to combat Apple Inc in the mobile-computing market, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Microsoft is using the changes to try and get more manufacturers to adopt Windows RT, a version of its flagship software for tablets, said the people, who asked not to be identified because pricing is confidential. The price cuts affect Windows RT for small-sized tablets.
A year after unveiling the first Windows RT machines aimed at eroding Apple and Google Inc. lead in the $64 billion tablet market, Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft is struggling. Global device makers such as Hewlett-Packard Co. and HTC Corp. are shunning the system, leaving a dearth of RT machines in stores and giving Windows RT less than a percentage point of market share in the first quarter, compared with 40 percent for Apple, according to IDC.
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